The 34-year-old recording appears to be the first documented evidence of the species being able to mimic sounds. Researcher Dr. Peter Fullagar recorded Ripper in 1987 at the Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve near Canberra.
Mimicking sounds is a rare characteristic. There is evidence of vocal learning in dolphins, whales, elephants, and bats, but it does not appear to be like most mammals.
Researchers previously assumed that vocal learning evolved in only three of the 35 orders of bird species, but thanks to Ripper, Prof Carel ten Cate can now introduce a new order into the group.
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